The Basics

For the Classic City Chalk Fest, each participant or team will be given one box of artist pastels and a 10-foot by 10-foot square on the sidewalk or asphalt, depending on space needed. The spaces will be primed with tempera paint and marked out in advance of the start of the festival. You and your team will have three hours to create your masterpiece — whether it’s a reproduction of a work of art, or an original composition.

As you paint, remember to be courteous to your neighbors. No portable radios are permitted, and you should keep your space visible at all times. Remember, viewers are part of the creative process and interaction with them is part of the fun.

At the end of the drawing time, a panel of judges from the Athens Area arts Council will award overall prizes, as well as additional categories reflective of the overall entrants.



The teams

Minimum of 1 person per team. There is no maximum number of team members, but keep in mind that each team is assigned one 10-foot by 10-foot square. The squares allocated will be determined by festival organizers no later than 11 a.m. on the day of the event. Each team will have three hours to complete their artwork. Upon the three-hour mark, all chalk must be laid down and drawing will discontinue.


  • Each drawing must remain within the designated square area.
  • No spray fixatives may be used.
  • Use only the chalk distributed for the competition.
  • Only one box of chalk will be provided for each square.
  • Drawing on buildings, trees or any surfaces other than assigned squares is not permitted.
  • The primary design of a square must be created in chalk.
  • No materials may be used that emit offensive odors or cause potential annoyances to other artists or festival guests.
  • Three-dimensional elements may be incorporated into square designs. These must not exceed the square area, cannot exceed two feet in height and must be removed by the artist no later than 5 p.m.
  • The festival is a family event. Any artwork that contains nudity, profanity or other content deemed inappropriate by festival officials will be removed.
  • Only participants who have registered for the competition will be eligible to receive a prize. Participants must be present to collect the prize.

Judges or festival officials can disqualify artists for failure to adhere to any of the above guidelines.

Tips and tricks

First time drawing art on the sidewalk? Don’t worry, here are some tips from the pros. First, to help reproduce a piece of artwork, you have one of two options:

1. Scale to Size (for example, 1 inch = 1 foot)
Graph out a photo/print or your original on tracing paper and reproduce to scale. Perforate the outlined areas of the enlarged drawing with a pounce wheel or fork, until you have outlined the entire image with puncture marks.

2. Project Scaled Image on Wall
Project a slide of the work to be reproduced to scale as large as desired street painting, onto a wall or screen. Tape the craft or tracing paper to that wall or screen and outline the projected image on the paper.

Remove the paper from the wall/screen and lay on a carpeted surface. Perforate the outlined areas with a pounce wheel or fork until you have again outlined the drawing with puncture marks.

Once you arrive at the festival, you can use either template by duct taping it to your square and outlining it with chalk. This will give you an outline of your drawing, and a starting point. Roll up the template and keep it to the side in case something gets smudged or erased.


Use a piece of flat corrugated cardboard to scoot around on while working on your painting, to help keep you and your work cleaner. Surgical gloves are great to use while drawing, and small pieces of foam or cloth are great to use for blending your pastels and softening your drawing techniques.

A little chalk goes a long way. When you check in, you will be given ONE box of chalk per street painting space. Most first-time street painters are amazed at how little chalk they actually use to complete a drawing so large. If you need additional chalk or certain colors of chalk, you can either share with your street painting neighbor or come to the check-in table for more chalk.

Always remember to return any chalk that you are not using to the check-in table.


Materials you may want to bring

  • Pre-made template or grid diagram.
  • Color copies of the painting/work being reproduced.
  • Color photocopies work well. Bring at least one copy for each artist working in your group.
  • You also may also wish to laminate the copies as they get pretty dirty during use.
  • Containers to hold / separate / organize your pastels.
  • Knee pads and /or knee protection. (You will be glad you did at the end of the day)
  • Surgical gloves
  • 2” roll of masking tape
  • Duct tape
  • Roll of paper towels
  • Pastel blending tools (i.e. sponge, foam, rag)
  • Baby wipes
  • Sun hat/visor, sun screen protection.